BRITs Critics’ Choice shortlist revealed

BRITs Critics Choice shortlist – Izzy Bizu, Frances and Jack Garratt
BRITs Critics Choice shortlist – Izzy Bizu, Frances and Jack Garratt

BRITs Critics Choice shortlist – Izzy Bizu, Frances and Jack Garratt. Pic: Alex De Mora/JFoxton/Dan Harris

Three artists nominated for the honour could follow in the footsteps of Ellie Goulding, Sam Smith and someone called Adele

This week has seen The BRIT Awards announce the 2016 shortlist for the annual Critics’ Choice award as 21-year-old London soulstress Izzy Bizu, Berkshire singer-songwriter Frances and British artist-producer and multi-instrumentalist Jack Garratt. Upon their nomination, the three artists have been inducted into the BRITs Voting Academy and are now eligible themselves to vote for The BRIT Awards 2016.

The Critics’ Choice Award is chosen by a team of music publication editors along with heads of music at major radio and TV stations. The Award is open to artists signed to a label who are set to release their debut albums in 2016, with more than 100 artists from a range of genres considered for the award.

Born to an Ethiopian mother and English father, Izzy Bizu grew up on a diet of Ella Fitzgerald, Amy Winehouse and Marvin Gaye. Discovered at an ILuvLive open mic event, the 21 year old London soulstress garnered early support from Radio 1 and 1Xtra and is set to release her debut album A Moment Of Madness in May. “I’m so honoured to be nominated for the BRITs Critics’ Choice Award this year,” exclaimed Bizu. “I grew up watching the BRITs on the TV at home so it’s pretty exciting to be a part of it!”

With two EP releases and a debut album in the making, Berkshire songstress Frances is currently on tour in the US, having recently completed her own UK headline tour. She is due to release her new single Borrowed Time, which she has co-written with Howard Lawrence form Disclosure. “It’s such a huge honour to be nominated for the Critics’ Choice award,” said Frances. “I’ve followed the BRITs my whole life, but never thought I’d be lucky enough to be nominated…”

British artist-producer and multi-instrumentalist Jack Garratt will release his debut album Phase in February. Having sold out a UK tour this Autumn, He will be supporting Mumford & Sons on their UK arena tour, before another headline tour next year. Garratt commented: “It’s amazing to be nominated for the BRITs Critics’ Choice Award 2016. It’s such a significant award that highlights the importance of new music, so it’s a genuine honour to have been nominated alongside some other incredible new acts from the UK.”

Since launching in 2008 the Critics’ Choice Award has successfully identified future British recording talent, with past winners – Adele, Florence + The Machine, Ellie Goulding, Jessie J, Emeli Sandé, Tom Odell, Sam Smith and, last year’s selection, James Bay – collectively selling more than 21 million albums.

The 2016 Critics’ Choice Award winner will be announced on 27 November 2015 and The BRIT Awards 2016 will take place on 24 February 2016 at London’s O2 Arena, whilst being broadcast live on ITV. For more details, take a look at the official BRIT Awards website:

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